The Irish Hotels Federation has called on the Government to spend €300 million over the next five years on tourism products and infrastructure.
The IHF says at the current level of investment the tourism industry is jeopardising future investment and putting the tourism industry at risk. According to the Irish Examiner, the body has asked the Government to invest €60 million a year for the next five years in its pre-election submission.
In its submission the IHF lays out a four-point plan that it says will ensure economic growth and employment over the next five years. A further 40,000 jobs will be create over this time if the Government puts the plans to action, its says. The IHF has called for:
- Greater cost competitiveness in the Irish market
- Restoring tourism marketing spend to 2008 levels
- Allocating extra funding for tourism products and infrastructure
- Investing in skills and training
Stephen McNally, president of the IHF (pictured) said that considerable investment is necessary to ensure growth. “We’re at the early stage of recovery following the downturn and a lot more needs to be done before our industry reaches its full potential for growth and job creation.
“We’re calling on the main political parties to commit to a range of pro-tourism policies that bolster Ireland as a leading destination for overseas visitors and holidaymakers. With the right support, this would generate up to 40,000 additional new jobs in tourism businesses across the country by 2021,” he added.
The IHF added that every euro spent on tourism marketing by the State is worth €34 in visitor spending to the country and the €300 million figure represents just 1 per cent of annual tourism export receipts over the same period.